From the Olympics to the NBA Finals, from the World Series to the Tour de France, from high-tech labs in Canberra and Colorado Springs to converted warehouses in Santa Monica, even in neighborhood gyms and on city sidewalks, there is a revolution taking place.
Not so long ago, you could compete at the top of the athletic world with hard work, a good coach, and a little luck. But after a century when world records were smashed with ease, we’ve started to find improvement harder to come by. Today’s athletes are now turning to advanced technology and savvy science to help them reach new levels of human performance.
In Faster, Higher, Stronger, veteran journalist Mark McClusky takes readers behind the scenes with a new generation of athletes, coaches, and scientists whose accomplishments are changing our understanding of human physical achievement and completely redefining the limits of the human body. Examining the ever-evolving intersection of sports, science, and technology, McClusky explores:
- Tricks for the brain to help the body fight fatigue
- Nutritional hacks that fuel athletes
- The huge impact data can have on training
- Smart ways to speed up learning a new skill
- The competitive benefits of being a late bloomer
Brimming with cutting-edge science and gripping anecdotes, Faster, Higher, Stronger is a fascinating, exhilarating look at how far we can push the boundaries of our bodies and minds.
Reviews and advance praise for Faster, Higher, Stronger
McClusky’s eye-opening account of sports science shatters outmoded training myths and heralds a revolutionary new terrain, in which the combination of high-tech methods and scientific breakthroughs designed will give the sports fan something wondrous to watch. —Publishers Weekly
Speed-skating super-suits, motion-tracking cameras, the 10,000 hour rule—it's all covered in Mark McClusky's engrossing look into how athletes use science to avoid injury, train smarter, and shatter records. —Ian Gordon, Mother Jones
McClusky states that “every great athlete is the product of the interaction between their genetics and their effort,” and he presents rigorous research with an accessible style relatable to both professional and lay readers alike. All of this trickles down to amateur athletics as well, and McClusky does a good job of relating cutting-edge science to people wanting to run their 5K a little faster or shave a few strokes off their golf handicap. —Craig Clark, Booklist
While most of the work is dedicated to advancements in sports science, McClusky saves the inevitable conversation of performance-enhancing drugs for the conclusion. He tries to discover the thin line between finding and utilizing scientific advantages and actual cheating. It's a difficult one to discover, but the book's overall strength is McClusky's willingness to engage those questions many sports fans have trouble navigating. This is a fascinating read about the creative—and sometimes bizarre—training techniques extreme athletes use. VERDICT: This brief but detailed tour of modern sports science will garner strong interest from athletes, sports fans, and even couch potatoes. —Brett Rohlwing, Library Journal
“Success in top-level sports is no longer just an athletic contest — it’s a learning contest that takes place on the frontiers of science, technology, and the human body. If you’re interested in understanding and competing in this new world, you need to buy Mark McClusky’s smart, invigorating, and useful book, right now.”
“Is fatigue mostly in your head? Can built-in talent take you to the Olympics in only four years? Will big data transform how we play basketball? Faster, Higher, Stronger is a brilliant, fun report on the science of hacking your performance.”
—Clive Thompson, author of Smarter Than You Think
“Faster, Higher, Stronger is one of the most lucid and entertaining books I've read about sports science and how it is making better, faster, stronger athletes. More important, though, Mark McClusky clearly explains why this science matters to the rest of us and how we can use it in our lives. A smart and important book.”
—Gretchen Reynolds, author of The First 20 Minutes
“In my more than 20 years researching the field of health and fitness, few books have captured my attention like Mark McClusky's riveting investigation of the groundbreaking science fueling elite athletic performance. Faster, Higher, Stronger breaks the code and gives everyday readers a chance to steal the cutting-edge secrets of the pros.”
—Dave Zinczenko, author of Eat This, Not That
“Mark McClusky has written an enlightening, intelligent, comprehensive look at the merging of sports and science. It’s truly fascinating stuff.”
—Jeff Pearlman, bestselling author of Showtime